Audio Tape 1 Side 1

AK: Out of Kentucky I'm Colonel Arthur L. Kelley. Morgan was in WWII he was with the famous Company D, of the 192nd tank battalion, from Harrodsburg, KY. that was fought the delaying action in Luzon and subsequently captured, some participated in the death march, some were captured at Corregidor and, in the case of Morgan, he was captured at Fort Drum, of which we'll find out a little more.

He went from there to Cabanatuan #3 and stayed there about 2 years and a half until November 1942. and then, on the Hell Ship, took a ride to Japan, to the main island. And spent the rest of the war on that island, Honshu. Lets just start now....

You're joining Company D ?

(188K) MF: <016>In 1937 we were having a big flood around KY. Down in Frankfort it was flooding quite a bit, and some of the guys talked to me about joining the National Guard. Well I thought it was a pretty good idea too, because living on the farm we weren't making a lot of money and I wanted to make a little extra. So I joined the Guard 12-March-1937 and we made monday night drills real regular and then they had a strike up in Harlan County. That was the first duty I seen was going up in Harlan County and preventing them people from killing each other. Then from that we go to the Derby every year. We had a good time going down there. Then we'd go to Fort Knox two weeks out of the year and train with the regular Army, doing our tank training. At that time I was a tank driver and I ended up being a tank crewman. We had a pretty good time, at that time. So in November 1940, thats when the Japanese, I mean, everything was getting pretty serious. Germany was attacking everybody in the Country, so they federalized the 38th tank company which thats what we were at that particular time. November, I think it was the 25th, we all went to Harrodsburg and gathered there and stayed a couple of days because we had to get out of the National Guard and re-enlist in the Army. And after that we traveled to Fort Knox. They put us in tents for a while, because they were building all new barracks at Fort Knox at that particular time. And what really made it so bad, it was winter time and it got real cold, and we were getting all our trainees in to give them basic training. And I tell you, it was really something to see these young men coming from down in the lower parts of KY, some of their hair was down to their shoulders and some of the uniforms didn't fit them, some of them had World War One uniforms issued to them! Anyway, we trained them and moved to other barracks. After we got all our basic trainees trained, then we started training with our equipment. We got tanks, trucks, jeeps, motorcycles, and all the equipment that we needed. Then we started going out on the post, the reservation, and staying weeks at a time, training, and training, and training!

And in the meantime, I went to the Armor School, went to track field mechanics school. From that time on I was pretty well stuck in the maintenance section. Thats what I did all during my Army career, in the maintenance section. With the exceptions of a few times. I ended up at various units doing minor things, but not.. but I still stayed in the maintenance field.

Then in September.. no August, 1941 we went to Louisiana (?? <058>) on maneuvers. Then, I was in the maintenance field, I was crew chief in the maintenance section. A guy name of Wallace Denny was actually the motor sergeant in our company. I was, more or less, maintenance under him. In those days the motor sergeant didn't do nothing, he went around dressed up all the time and his crew chief took care of all his problems. So I was SOP and nobody else thought anything about it. We went through Louisiana maneuvers really thinking everything was screwed up but come to find out General Patton picked us out being the best tank battalion, as far as the National Guard went down in Louisiana on maneuvers. Then we were scheduled to go to the Philippines.

AK: <067> Let me ask you one question here, Did you all get some training on tanks prior to coming on active duty?

MF: You mean in the National Guard? Yeah, oh yeah.

AK: In other words, did your officers have some training on tactics and the NCOs?

MF: Yeah, well in two weeks we come Fort Knox. We'd go under the supervision of the regular army and went through maneuvers with units of the regular army. So, if we'd goof up they would correct us...

AK: You mean during the two weeks training...

MF: Yeah, uh hm. During the two weeks, we weren't on our own. We had regular army personnel with us all the time.

AK: So you were tankers by the time you came on active duty.

MF: Oh yeah,

AK: Skilled drivers, and skilled gunners, and skilled maintenance men, and skilled chiefs.

MF: Oh yeah. lets see, we had 66 men in a company, and all of them was pretty well trained in whatever their job was. Tank driver, tank commanders, crewman, radio operators, and all that.

AK: You said you thought that the company was sort of screwed up, what'd you mean by that?

MF: Oh, the reason I say that is that we'd have blackouts, and, well we didn't get nobody hurt, but a lot of the other units got motorcycle riders killed, because in a blackout they'd fall over at night and the tanks would run over them. Finally they let motorcycle riders keep their lights on. But, I don't know, in my mind, you know, things would happen, tanks were breaking down, and all this, in my mind I was thinking things were screwed up, but I was just one little section, but the overall picture of the whole maneuvers, according to the umpires, our battalion was superior over all the rest of the units down there. And general Patton, old famous Patton, he was the one that selected us to go to the Philippines. Thats my understanding. Thats the reason we went over there.

AK: OK. I guess when I interrupted you there, you were talking about the training at Fort Knox. You were talking about the maneuvers at Louisiana so you actually do well and he selects you and you're going to go overseas, allright, when'd you hear about that and what happened?

MF: Well the maneuvers were over with and we pulled into bivouac area near Fort Polk, Louisiana. We pitched pup tents because they hadn't built that post up yet enough to house all the people. Anyway, after we pulled off maneuvers and went in there then we got the word that we were going to San Francisco, but we didn't know where we were really going. And they gave us all two weeks leave. So I come home and my brother who was two years older, Edward, he was two years older than I am. He had a back problem and was here at Fort Knox hospital and they wanted to give him a discharge on account of his back. I don't exactly know what his problem was. Anyway, he refused to take a medical discharge, so while I was home on leave he went to Louisiana. While he was down there he helped the guys that was there to draw all our equipment. In fact they issued all new tanks, new trucks, new jeeps, new motorcycles, and everything else. Then when I went off leave back down to Fort Polk we got on a train and went to San Francisco. We got to San Francisco in September or October, I'm not sure, it was somewhere, then from San Francisco to Fort McDowell (sp?), they called it Angels Island, and it was more or less repo-depot (sp?) for the people going overseas and the people coming back from the Philippines, China or wherever they was at. We stayed there several days. Meantime we was, the maintenance section had to go from there back over to San Francisco and help load all our equipment on a ship. Meantime we was taking physicals, getting shots, and people being examined, some of the married guys was being discharged, anybody that had a problem with their lungs they was holding them. We had a guy Horace Hargon, they found a spot on his lung so they pulled him off and he didn't go with us. Come to find out, it wasn't anything serious and he ended up in some other unit, and went some other place. But I think, as well as I could recall, he was the only one that got pulled off shipping overseas.

AK: That was Kenneth's brother?

MF: Yeah. After that we got on the ship and headed out to wherever we was going. We got to Hawaii and went in Pearl Harbor and stayed there about four days. We was waiting on another ship to catch up with us. After we left Hawaii we went from there to Guam, we went blackout from there to Guam because evidently they suspected the Japanese was patrolling them waters or something. And from Guam we went on into Manila. Blackout all the way. We got to Manila, I think it was on something like Thanksgiving day, well as I can recall. We got off the ship and got on a train and went to Fort Stotsinburgh (sp?), thats at Clark's Field, they call it Clark's Field now. I think the people that were there, the 194th tank battalion was already there, and they'd cooked up a big Thanksgiving meal for us. That was about 25-November as well as I can recall and from that day until December 7 we worked like nothing you ever seen, day and night, Saturdays and Sundays and everything else getting our equipment together because we had to mount all the machine gun and all the radios and get everything in our tanks. On the day that the Japanese bombed Clark Field we had just finished up putting our last machine guns on our halftrack. That day, December 8, well December 8 was the day they actually packed us because on December 7 was when they got Pearl Harbor. We was in the mess hall up there eating chow that day at noon time, and I'd just got through eating and I was assigned, uh, my vehicle was a motorcycle, that's what I crew chiefed in maintenance, that's what I was supposed to ride. Come out of mess hall, was looking at my motorcycle, somebody said, "Oh, look at them Navy bombers!". We was all looking at them, it was beautiful flying up there in formation. There was about 50 some-odd of them, as well as I can recall. And about time we looked at them real good, we heard some making a whistling, hissing sound, falling, about the next thing we seen was buildings, people, airplanes, and everything else going up in the sky because they was, they started bombing Clark Field. Immediately after this bombing raid then the fighter planes came in and started strafing the heck out of everything. That was at noon. This lasted until about 4 or 5 o'clock. It was about 4 hours all together, I guess, something like that. Them fighter planes would come in, they'd leave, then they'd come back. It made about, I don't know, about 2 or 3 runs on us there that afternoon. The only thing I can say where they come from was off an aircraft carrier sitting off out there someplace. Thats the only thing I can think of. I never did really know where they came from.

AK: <181>They came from Formosa, some of them.

MF: Yeah, wherever they come from. But anyway, they really tore the Air Force up. They killed, I don't know, an awful lot of people. Them B-17's was setting on the runway with their engines running, loaded, the crews in them. I was told, I don't know it be the truth or not, that they couldn't get orders to take off. Before they could get off though most of them had already got blown up or burned up. You might know this story about Captain Kelley? They took one B-17 off and dived it into one of their ships out there in Lingayan.

AK: Colin P. Kelley?

MF: Yeah.

AK: I've heard the story.

MF: Well there was, I don't know, 4, 5, 6 maybe B-17s that wadn't destroyed. But they didn't last too long because the Japanese had air superiority and we had P-40s and they blowed just about all them, they killed just about all of them. A lot of them on that field and other fields around Luzon. They just about blasted all of them. We had a few left and them P-40s, they were so fast that if they didn't get the Zero on the first pass it would take them 10 miles to recover and make a turn and come back. By that time the Zero would be gone. Them Zero's could slow up and they could really speed up. They just could just plain out-maneuver them P-40s, thats all there was to it.

That day we had some things happen. We had a boy named Brooks. The parade field at Fort Knox is named after him. He was the first armored personnel killed during WWII. That young man was my half-track driver. He was over at the tank talking to some of the crew, they came in there and started bombing and he run across the airfield trying to get back to his halftrack and that's when a bomb fell behind him and, I think it almost blowed his head off and blowed off one of his arms. He never knew what hit him. I mean, it just really smacked him. He was the only person we got, actually got hurt that day. We had our tanks, well, about 2-3 days before they actually bombed Clark Field and Stotsinburgh (sp?), they had deployed out tanks around Clark field because, for some reason or another, they thought the Japs were going to drop paratroopers on Clark Field. But they didn't drop them on Clark field but it was a mountain off in the distance they called Mount O'Riot (sp?). They did drop paratroopers on it but I think the Philippino people captured or killed everyone of them. I don't think there was any of them that got away.

AK: When did they drop those? After the bombing?

MF: Yeah. Well it wasn't that same day, it was about, it seemed like a few days after they bombed Clark field they came in there. The Japanese had air superiority. They come in there, fly any time they wanted to with anything they wanted to because we had a lot of enemy aircraft gun and we shot a lot of their planes down. <222> They didn't have nothing, the p-40s, we had a few of them, but they wadn't no match for them Zeros. They could run fast, or they could go slow and their maneuverability was just plain out of this world. The P-40 didn't have a Chinamans chance with them Zeros. We shot a lot of their fighter planes down and we shot a lot of their bombers down but they had the air superiority and they could do whatever they wanted to do. They could bomb us, strafe us, anytime they felt like it.

Clark Field... That day I seen a... Well, I tell you what, they was about the scaredest I ever was in my life that day. After they dropped them bombs I go on a motorcycle and went from mess hall and started back down to the motor pool and they dropped the bombs in our PO oil (sp?) dump where we had oil and gasoline and all that stored. That was the awfulest explosion and fire and smoke. I layed the motorcycle down and got in a ditch. This fuel and oil <240> circled around and coming down in the ditch here where I'm laying. The Japanese was strafing the road and it was so smoke and dusty that I had to put on my gas mask. We carry them all the time anyway. I took out my 45 and I was shooting at anything; anything that come over! I was so scared that I didn't know my name I don't think. After that day as the time went along, I mean I was always leery, but I never was scared that much anymore. That was my baptism by fire, I guess. I seem a guy, an old Philippino come staggering down the road, he was drunk, intoxicated, or whatever you want to call it, he was holding up his hand, "V..V..Wargames, Wargames!" and last time I seen him he was still staggering down the road and them Zeros just strafing the heck out of that street and road down through there. As far as I know, he never did get hit. He thought it was war games! Right across the street it was an antiaircraft unit setup. They had 50-caliber machine guns. They was firing these fighters and bombers and doing everything. This one guy jumped off this mount and started to run and another guy got on that gun and wheeled it around and flattened that guy right out. I was just lying across the street and seen all that. I never did say nothing about that because he could have brought that thing around and let me have it at the same time.

AK: You mean he aimed at one of the friendly forces?

MF: Yeah! This guy that jumped off that gun and started running. This other guy got on that gun and wheeled it around and took him right down... he was running away from him...

AK: What it an accident?

MF: No! He done it on purpose!

AK: Was it someone from Company D? or...

MF: No, No, it was ...

AK: Air defense unit?

MF: Yeah, I don't recall which one it was.

AK: Was he shooting at him because he was running, do you think?

MF: Yeah. Yeah. Cowardly act in time of combat, running in the face of the enemy, or whatever you want to call it.

AK: Was he hollering at him or anything? Did you hear him hollering at him say "get back on the gun" or anything?

MF: No. There was so much noise...

AK: How far away from you was it when you saw it?

MF: It was about ...

AK: 100 yards or less?

MF: No, it was less than that. It was about 25 yards! It was about as close as here, well, about 25 yards, I guess.

AK: Did it kill him? The soldier?

MF: I don't know.

AK: Knocked him down anyway.

MF: Yeah. He went down. Last time I seen him he was still laying there. But there were people laying all over the place. Where they got shot from strafing, and bomb shrapnel, stuff like that. Nobody'd ever associate that guy shooting him with a 50 caliber machine gun. They'd just chalk it up that the Japanese shot him by strafing or something like that. So, I thought to myself, "my god, if that guy sees me, he'll probably wheel around here and let me have it!" So as soon as I could I got on my motorcycle and motored out of that place!

AK: Where were you at this time? Near the motor pool?

MF: Yeah. Right near the motor pool.

AK: Where's the motor pool located as far as the NCO? Where you in the MCO mess when they started bombing? Was that where you were?

MF: No, I was in the mess hall.

AK: OK. Where was the mess hall located on the field generally? Was it on the north side, south, east, west?

MF: Well, I tell you what, it was about west, lets see, it was about west from Clarks field. But it wasn't but about 300 yards from Clark's field. No it was less than that, about 200 yards from Clarks field. It was about in the center of our post, or where we was at. We was... well, Stotsinburgh (sp?) was coming to the east of us, no about north...

AK: Well, when they started bombing initially, how far did you have to go to get to where you were going to go to the motor pool there?

MF: Oh it wadn't no distance, it wadn't very far at all. It wadn't over, say, 200 yards from the mess hall.

AK: And that's where you went when you went to motor pool.

MF: Well, I went from the mess hall and went out and got on the road and they hit the PO oil dump and I hit the ditch. I stayed right there until they quit strafing. Then I got on the motorcycle...

AK: OK. That my question. The first bombs that came in, the heavy bomb, the high altitude bombing, how close did they hit to the mess hall and to you all? Some distance away?

MF: They were at least 200 yards away. They was strictly bombing the buildings...

AK: 200 yards is not very far.

MF: Well, no its not very far, buts that about how close it was.

AK: The initial round, the initial bombs.

MF: Yeah.

AK: So debris was flying by you then...

MF: Oh it was all over the place. You could see people being blowed in the air and, like you say, it was really something to see to never see nothing like that before! You see bodies and arms and legs. Well, I understand, I think the first initial bomb, they dropped right in the big consolidated mess. You could see this...

AK: Another mess hall.

MF: Yeah. In that big mess hall. In another one. Yeah, the Air Force, not ours. They never did touch our mess hall.

AK: How close was that mess hall to your mess hall? Do you know?

MF: It was about 2 or 300 yards. It wadn't too far away. Well, say, like Clark Field was in this area, our barracks were sitting like this. It wadn't no distance at all from here to Clark Field. Then the runway was off down here, see. We were just right here, a very short distance down to the buildings, Clark Field and the whole bit. We was all pretty well congested in one area right there.

<334> AK: You were outside the mess hall looking up at that formation when you heard the noise.

MF: Yeah.

AK: You heard the noise then it was going to hit the ground pretty shortly there after, then you're going to see the explosions. The first thing that you saw when they exploded, was that hitting the mess hall?

MF: Yeah, it seemed like the zeroed right in on the big consolidated mess. All the personnel of the Air Force at that time, Army-Air Force, I guess, they all eat in that big mess. They just had that one mess hall for the whole Clark's Field. It seemed like they concentrated their bombing right on that mess hall. Then the bombs trail off down into the maintenance buildings and the aircraft and down the runway and that area. It was the awfulest, I don't know how many bombs dropped in there, but it was a whole lot of them, with 50 some-odd planes.

AK: Did you hit the ground immediately or were you laying on the ground?

MF: Well no, normally...

AK: I mean, the shock, you were kind of standing there when those things were falling and looking at them and they were still falling.

MF: Yeah, we just stood there, we were spell-bound. We didn't know.. Oh my god, It's hard telling..., I don't know what I said. They weren't dropping were we was at. So I got on my motorcycle and started out a road, I had to go one street, turn right, and down another street to get back to the motor pool. As I went up this street and turned then the fighters started coming in there. They was right in behind the bombers. They started strafing the daylights out of things. They hit the POL dump over there. We had a big ditch alongside that road...

AK: About how much fuel did you have in that POL dump? Is it just the battalion POL dump? POL dump for the whole concern?

MF: For the whole place, yeah.

AK: Aircraft included?

MF: No. No, they had their POL...

AK: I'm just trying to find out about how much POL you are talking about, you talking about thousands of gallons or hundreds of gallons?

MF: Yeah, thousands of gallons of high octane gas for our tanks, trucks, things like that.

AK: How close were you when it hit that POL?

MF: I guess I was in 100 yards.

AK: And that fire almost reached out and grabbed you then didn't it?

MF: You're not kidding. It just almost blowed me down. Thats how bad and I could see that stuff. They had it pretty well ditched around it. The drainage there was, where them drums, all the things that they held the fuel in was blowing up and this fuel was burning and running. There was a big ditch. I could see that stuff coming through that ditch.

AK: Toward you?

MF: Yeah! I thought to myself "Am I going to lay here and get burn up? or I'm gonna get out of here and get killed on the strafing on this road?" Before that ever got to me the strafing just about quit. I got up and took off and got back to the motor pool.

AK: How far is that to the motor pool?

MF: Not very far, about, I'd say, 100 yards or less.

AK: You ran over to the motor pool.

MF: I rode my motorcycle over there.

AK: Oh. You drove your motorcycle.

MF: Oh yeah.

AK: You were doing to hang on to your motorcycle come hell or high water.

MF: You're not kidding!

AK: Why were you so determined to get to the motor pool?

MF: Because everything, all my men, and everybody else was there.

AK: Get back to your area of responsibility.

MF: Yeah.

AK: When you got to the motor pool what'd you find?

MF: Well, got down there. Hadn't nothing been hit of ours. I knew all our tanks were around Clark Field. I don't know. We didn't get nobody hurt except this boy named Brooks. He was already out at the field in the halftrack. At that time we had a halftrack in the maintenance section. He was out there with a couple of mechanics. They was maintaining their tanks and things like that. So I got on the motorcycle and went out around Clark's Field in the area where our company was, to see what had happened. We didn't have no tanks or nothing like that get, we got some of them, got shrapnel dents and things like that, but nobody hurt. Like I said the only person got hurt was Brooks. We got orders to move everything out of the compound from where we were stationed there in Stotsinburgh (sp?) to bivouac. We had to move out. So that afternoon we vacated that post and never went back again.

AK: When you were making your round to see see what, to assess the damage, I assume, did you run into the sight where Brooks was injured or killed?

MF: Yeah.

AK: Did you see Brooks?

MF: Yeah.

AK: You saw his body?

MF: Yeah. He got, well he was running across the runway, that's what he was doing. The tanks was around the airfield, the airfield was long, you know how runways, this side, up this side.

AK: Both sides of the runway... spread out...

MF: He had a halftrack parked on the opposite side of the airfield where our tanks were (lost some here...) He kinda in the maintenance area where we, if we had any problem, we'd bring our tanks in that area and maintain them. Just minor problems we'd fix them where they were set up out there around the runway. He was over at the tank talking to somebody, or something, I don't know, and the bombs started falling. He made a run across the runway to get back to his halftrack because we had machine guns, 50 caliber machine guns, mounted on that just for that purpose.

AK: You think he was going to get on a machine gun to engage...

MF: Yeah, he was trying to get back to it.

AK: Brooks worked for you?

MF: Yeah.

AK: Was he a good soldier?

MF: Oh Yeah.

AK: He was a black soldier and the only black. Did you know he was black at that time?

MF: Yeah, he told me.

AK: He told you? He didn't tell the rest of them, though, did he?

MF: No.

AK: Did you keep that a secret?

MF: Yeah. I just kept it to myself. He told me not to tell nobody so I never did mention it. I knew he was black all the time.

AK: Well, you know, at that time the army wadn't integrated. Did that cause any concern of yours?

MF: Nobody thought nothing about it.

AK: They didn't think anything about it at all.

MF: No.

AK: You were glad to have him as good troop.

MF: Well sure. All through my army career I never felt no prejudice against anybody, black, yellow, I didn't care.

AK: Even before the integration.

MF: That's right.

AK: I mean, that was just your attitude.

MF: Yeah, I never...

AK: Did any of the other men in Company D know that Brooks was black? Do you think?

MF: As far as I know, I was the only one that knew about it, as far as I know. There may have been more...

AK: That suspected it, right?

MF: Yeah, a possibility. It's hard to tell, its hard to detect if he was black though. Its pretty hard...

AK: He was light complected?

MF: He was light, really light, yeah.

AK: How long did he work for you? From the time you went to Fort Knox until you was..

MF: Yeah. He went through basic training. You know, give him his basic training there in November 40. Then he went through the track field mechanics school then he come back to the unit.

AK: Was he a pretty good mechanic?

MF: Yeah, he was pretty good.

AK: As far as maintaining those tanks, those farmers from Harrodsburg had had a lot of experience maintaining equipment and you'all were pretty good at that I take it.

MF: I knew them tanks inside, I could, like the the old saying, you know, field strip your machine gun blindfolded? Them tanks, I knew them that well, engine, transmission, everything.

AK: Had you much mechanical experience as a young person? You worked on a farm didn't you?

MF: Yeah. I could always adapt mechanical things.

AK: You were kind of a mechanic before you went to the mechanical school on the tanks.

MF: Yeah. I could always fix just about anything.

AK: Was that true of the other tankers from Harrodsburg? Were they pretty good mechanics? Because of there farm experience, generally speaking, I mean, you been in the army 20 years and you know how things are...

MF: Yeah, as far as I know they was pretty good. Now my brother, he was a mechanic also.

AK: What was his name?

MF: Edward, Edward T. We went through the armor school together. When we got out of there we graduated top of our class and they wanted us to stay there as instructors. We said "No way buddy!".

AK: Gotta go with that company...

MF: Thats right! And if we had any idea that things gonna happen like they did we might have had second thoughts about it! We could have both stayed there as instructors and probably stayed there all during the war.

AK: You wanted to go back with company D because of the Harrodsburg connections?

MF: Yeah. That was the only place for us. Now he was in headquarters company. See, when they mobilized us they got personnel out of each company to make headquarters company. He was a crew chief of a team from battalion maintenance that went around to company maintenance. We could do so much then battalion would do the rest of it.

AK: OK. Morgan, that first experience that frightened you out of your wits, and would frighten anybody out of their wits, and the stress of the destruction that just sort of descends on a group of people and lasts for 4 hours, was that strafing pretty intense for the whole 4 hours? but sometimes there was some, I guess, there's some little slack time in between...

MF: Well, no, there'd just maybe be a few minutes before the next raid would come in.

AK: So you'all were under quite a bit of pressure. You know, sometimes, in this severe combat situation where there's destruction everywhere, you know, there's some, it exceeds peoples mental limits and, you know, some people suffer combat fatigue, as they called it, sometimes called shell shock in World War 1. Did you see any of that? Apparently it scared the dickens out of you, but you got right, you were always oriented toward your duty, you went to your motor pool, then you went around to see what damage was done to your tracks. Just within yourself and other people, the stress of it, can you describe some of that?

MF: Well, I was always on my toes, but I never did get to a point where I didn't know what I was doing or anything like that. I was fortunate, I guess. Yes I seen a lot of grown men cry like a small kid. Crawl away from...

AK: You're talking about the prisoners or subsequent duty, or you talking about right now at Clark Field?

MF: I'm talking about right off the bat. It may be mean hombre's in peacetime but as soon as them bullets start flying they just turn 180 degrees or 360 or whatever you want to call it. There was a few in our company like that, but I ain't gonna call no names or anything like that.

AK: In other words, it was so severe and so intense that it exceeded some of them's limit, momentarily, anyway.

MF: Yeah, yeah.

AK: Are you talking about 1 percent or 2 percent or are you talking about...

MF: Oh, less than that. In our company of, lets see we had 103-4 people in the company, talking about draftees and our (missed something). Out of our company there was about 3 people that was...

AK: It exceeded there mental limits...

MF: Thats right.

AK: And stressed them to a breaking point, to some degree.

MF: Yeah. They just wadn't worth a dime.

AK: From that time on? Or just during that brief period?

MF: From that time on.

AK: Throughout the whole war.

MF: Up until we got captured. Yeah, they just took them and put them in the mess hall. They more or less done KP duty and stuff like that just to keep them out of the way. You couldn't do nothing else with them, wadn't no place else to send them, see.

AK: Well, they were still able to function then...

MF: Yeah but...

AK: I mean, it didn't, sometimes it'll drive them completely out of there mind...

MF: They'd run away, you know...

AK: They'd take them out with a straight jacket.

MF: Well no, we didn't have nobody that bad off. I had one guy in my maintenance section. His name was, he was from Dayton, OH, name was Ross Casnaw (sp?). I don't mind telling this. I mean, the guy wadn't scared now, I mean, he was scared too, and we'd get penned down on a bombing raid where we get in a fox hole or just lay flat on the ground and that guy, I don't care what you'd do, he'd have to get up and run. It wadn't away from the enemy, he just had to run, thats all there was to it! He was libel to run toward the enemy as he would to run away from the enemy. When they started dropping them bombs, forget it. He was not staying on the ground. He never did get hit.

AK: He'd run through out the whole action.

MF: Yeah! Never got hit. I threatened him sometime, I said "if you don't lay still..." I said, "you get up I'm going to shoot you". He said "Ok, Ok, I don't mean to do that, I don't know why I do it, but I just can't stay there". Every time artillery or anything, we'd get penned down, he'd have to get up and run. He might run circles, but he wouldn't stay there! <600>

AK: Allright. Talk about the three that had the problems that went back to the mess hall and it stayed with them throughout the action, the delaying action, from Lingayan gulf into Bataan and till the surrender. Could you see that there'd been some psychological damage done? Did they have a stare that was different or did they recover and pretty much go on about their business?

MF: No they didn't have no stare, I know what you're talking about. No they didn't have nothing like that. When they got up there in the lines, bullets were flying, bombs were falling, they just...

AK: Go to pieces again?

MF: Yeah, they just...

AK: Anytime there was severe combat...

MF: They just go all to pieces. Like having a nervous breakdown. Just sull up, or, I don't know , they just plain wadn't there, thats all there was too it. Once the danger was over they pretty well come back to themself. You couldn't depend on them to help you out in case you got into a tight spot. So the company commander busted them back to privates and put in the mess hall.

AK: And they stayed there the whole time?

MF: Yeah.

AK: Were any of those from Harrodsburg?

MF: Yeah.

AK: Some from Harrodsburg, some draftees too.

MF: Right.


End of Audio Tape 1 Side 1